One of Italy’s most influential private philanthropic organisations helped to boost sales at the Artissima fair in Turin last week by acquiring 12 works for two of Turin’s most important institutions. Fondazione per l'Arte Moderna e Contemporanea CRT—the charity division of the now defunct financial institution Banca CRT—acquired the works (worth €281,000 according to a press statement) for the Castello di Rivoli Museo d'Arte Contemporanea and the Galleria Civica d'Arte Moderna e Contemporanea di Torino (Gam).
Works by Steffani Jemison (Untitled, Same Time, 2023), Marwa Arsanios and Cemile Sahin will join the permanent collection of the Fondazione Arte CRT and go on long-term loan to Castello di Rivoli; pieces by Lorenza Boisi (Winter Life, 2019), Francesco Cavaliere and Alessandro Pessoli will go on long-term loan to Gam.
The Fondazione Arte CRT has help boost the cultural credentials of Turin and the Piedmont region since it was founded in 1991, amassing a collection of 900 Modern and contemporary works worth more than €40m that are loaned long-term to Gam and the Castello di Rivolo.
Recently the foundation has been overhauled with the appointment of a new scientific committee whose members include Manuel Segade Lodeiro, the director of the Reina Sofia museum in Madrid and Hans Ulrich Obrist of London’s Serpentine Galleries. Luigi Cerutti, the organisation’s new secretary general and chief executive officer of the Umberto Allemandi publishing house (publisher of Il Giornale dell’Arte), says that the foundation’s budget has increased this year to €2.6m, up from €1.5m. The budget for acquiring works will be increased to €755,000 next year, a press statement says.
“We are a unique model for a private foundation, buying for two collections (Gam and Castello),” Cerutti tells The Art Newspaper. “There are three drivers: to keep buying for the two collections; the second is public art—we are going to launch a big project in the region for people outside of museums; the third [objective] is education. We’re putting a lot of commitment into devising a new project in conjunction with Turin public schools.”
The foundation is already making a splash in the public art realm, launching during Artissima week a free public art show, Dove finiscono le tracce (Where traces fade away), comprising five works located at impressive sites in the city including Palazzo Madama (Peter Friedl, Failed States, 2011) and the Museo del Risorgimento (Cally Spooner, Soundtrack for a Troubled Time, 2017).
“This is the first time the Fondazione Arte CRT has organised a proper show outside museums. The idea is to connect five incredible places in Turin, bringing people who don’t usually go to museums to see art. It could be a format we use again,” Cerutti adds.
The foundation’s new President, the high-profile Turin-based collector Patrizia Sandretto Re Rebaudengo, stresses that all of the works on show in Where traces fade away were acquired at past editions of Artissima. She is also keen to expand the remit of the foundation.
“In the next three years, I’d love to invite artists to create [public] site-specific sculptures,” she says. “As [the foundation] collection is so huge (900), there is also the opportunity to show works in other countries and spaces," she adds.
Meanwhile, 30 works belonging to Fondazione Arte CRT will be shown at the vast Arte Povera exhibition planned for the Bourse de Commerce in Paris next year, Sandretto Re Rebaudengo adds. And what about this new start for the foundation and the city with Francesco Manaocorda taking the reins at Castello di Rivoli? “I really hope that we can work well at this new moment. There is a synergy between public and private [bodies]—I really hope we can head in this direction".